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NASA Awards $14.3Mln Small Business Grants for Robotics, Deep-Space Survival

© AP Photo / Paul Kizzle / A NASA security helicopter flies by the NASA logo on the Vehicle Assembly Building
A NASA security helicopter flies by the NASA logo on the Vehicle Assembly Building - Sputnik International
A series of contracts totaling $14.3 million has been awarded to small businesses for technologies that will be needed for future deep-space missions, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) said in a press release.

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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — "NASA has selected 19 proposals from American small businesses and research institutions for Phase II of its competitive Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program, totaling $14.3 million in awards," the release said on Monday.

Projects include research on propulsion, robotics and other autonomous systems, as well as technologies that support human health and survival during extended space exploration missions, the release said.

"Proposals were selected according to their technical merit and feasibility, in addition to the experience, qualifications and facilities of the submitting organization," the release added.

The awards were made under a NASA program intended to stimulate partnerships between small businesses and research institutions, the release noted.

The effort will be managed by NASA's Ames Research Center in the state of California’s Silicon Valley, a US hub for technology start-up companies, as well as and tech giants such as Apple, Google and Facebook.

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